I’ve been hearing this question a lot, lately: “Jeremy, why have you decided NOW to give up your job and pursue a missionary lifestyle at the prayer house in Augsburg?”
My friends, supporters, my boss, my team: They have all asked me this one question. Just last week the two Vice Presidents for HR and Talent Attraction at Infineon took me aside and wanted to know: Why now, Jeremy?
At my job I have had to make it doubly clear that it has nothing to do with my job – it is as good as a job gets. I have no terrible team or boss (In fact it is the best team and the best boss I have ever had). I have enjoyed the responsibilities of leading a team of recruiters across Europe and being responsible for consistently searching to fill 360 positions – orchestrating the hiring of over 1000 employees per year. In fact I have felt that finally after two years of hard work my current position is finally at the place where I had always wanted it to be. The influence, the impact, the role and scope are positioned right where they should be. So why in the world do this crazy step and leave? I was honored by the way both VPs tried to convince me to stay. But as I have stated in an earlier blogpost – the call to full-time ministry had been on my life since I was 16 years old. And above that: I have fallen in love with this vision to adore Jesus 24/7. I can also see how God has given me this open door.
But I admit I was not feeling the greatest after talking to the Vice Presidents of the company last week – seeing the lure of success and career in their eyes and words. Walking home after work I just felt the absolute craziness of this step. I cried out to God telling him how I am desperate for his confirmation – NOW! I asked Him for a sign that I am on the right path – giving my life, time and talents to uphold his name in prayer and to spread the passion for prayer into His church. How awesome it was that as I came home and walked through the door I saw a dear lady that we just recently met talking to Inka at the table. I sat down to join their conversation still hearing my desperate cries of prayer just uttered outside the door. Then she started to tell us that she and her husband had been praying about us and would like to start supporting us. Ahh! – God is good!
But getting back to the question “Why now, Jeremy?” – I think everyone who asks me this is expecting me to give some defining event or moment as an answer. I have to disappoint them. There is no one defining moment that I can point to. It has much more been a filling up of my faith tank over years that naturally (or should I say inevitably) lead me to this decision. “There comes a moment in our lives when enough is enough. The pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.” – Mark Batterson, All In
Like scales that have a bucket of water on the one side, that is steadily being filled up by drops of faith, and on the other side of the scale, there is the immense weight of „security“ and „fear“. At one point last year, God must have let the one decisive drop of faith fall into my heart that led to the tipping of the scales. Added to that there was a deep sense of urgency that I felt: If I don’t act on this now the scales are bound to tip again towards security, because that is just how I am wired.
So I still shrug my shoulders when people ask me “why now”. I end up trying to explain what God has been doing in the secret places of my heart of the years and I admit there is a place for holy craziness in faith. I am confident that this decision will make a mark on me and my family for the rest of our life. I am eager to see what is around the bend.
Let me share with you a manifesto Mark Batterson shared at a college commencement speech that sums it up pretty well:
Quit living as if the purpose of life is to arrive safely at death.
Set God-sized goals. Pursue God-ordained passions. Go after a dream
that is destined to fail without divine intervention.
Keep asking questions. Keep making mistakes. Keep seeking God.
Stop pointing out problems and become part of the solution.
Stop repeating the past and start creating the future.
Stop playing it safe and start taking risks.
Expand your horizons. Accumulate experiences. Enjoy the journey.
Find every excuse you can to celebrate everything you can.
Live like today is the first day and last day of your life.
Don’t let what’s wrong with you keep you from worshiping what’s right with God.
Burn sinful bridges. Blaze new trails.
A note to my German friends and readers: Yes, I can write in German 😉 but I have chosen to use my heart language for these posts and hope it also helps our english speaking friends accross the globe to stay a bit more in touch with us. So thank you for bearing with me.
Eine Notiz an meine deutschsprachigen Freunde und Leser: Ja ich kann Deutsch ;-). Ich habe mich aber entschieden ab und zu auf diesem Blog in meiner „Herzens-Sprache“ zu schreiben und hoffe das es auch unseren englischsprachigen Freunde und Bekannte eine Hilfe ist mit uns in Verbindung zu bleiben. Danke für Deine Verständnis.